THE MILL ON THE FLOSS
To adapt a 600-page Victorian novel into a pertormance relevant and accessible to a modern audience is a considerable challenge which this production more than meets. Robin Brown's script istull ot subtlety and variety; contracting and distilling ot necessity. but always tocusing on Eliot's main concerns. Repressed sexuality is stressed through repeated relerence to the book's liquid sexual symbolism.
Jonathan Holloway‘s superbly slick. visual and inventive production creates richness lrom economy: the cast ollive (including Brown himsell) pertorm with great commitment and precision. using a minimum ot props. an exciting. inovative soundtrack and constantly shitting dramatic styles to surprise and delight the audience. This intelligent and highly entertaining show is both a laithtul adaptation and a stunning modern play. (Andrew Burnett)
o The Mill on the Floss Rcd Shift Theatre (‘0. YWCA (vcnuc 8) 325 4202. Lintil 29 Aug 5.15pm. £3.75 (£3.50).
Writer Frederic Mohr's BDZZY portrays James Boswell. the exiled Scot whojumped on the bandwagon ol literary lame with his biography ol Sam Johnson. as a lovable but clearly irrepressible moral reprobate. Bozzy does not gladly sutter prudes. and dwells with evident pleasure on a past at whoring and drinking. Ouitting his Edinburgh due to its inexplicable aversion to his activities. he betakes himsellto London. and the already debauched English. Thence he departs lorthe continent. and the charms otloreign ladies. linding the occasional moment to listen to the gems ol wisdom Voltaire and Rousseau let tall.
His irreverential sense ol humour prompts him to talk olJohnson. his supposed source at inspiration. as. ‘the old brute. . . who plays his best lines like some provincial actor in search at an accolade.‘
When premiered at the 1981 Festival. the show won a Fringe First. The 1987 production is at similar calibre.(H Davidson) 0 Bozzy. Winged Horse Touring Productions. Riddles Court olt Lawnmarket (venue 11) 225 8961. 10-22 Aug (not Suns). 6.50pm. 24—29. 1.35pm. £3.50 (£2.50).
Le Lavoir takes you into a dltlerent world. Brilliantly located in a beautitul old Edinburgh Washhouse - such an inspired piece at planning you can't imagine It being anywhere else- Theatre de la Basoche recreate lite in a French communal laundry on the eve ot the First World War. There's no plot and no obvious construction to the piece. but as the thirteen women go about their washing. stories and patterns emerge. Gradually through arguments. reconciliations and idle gossip we learn something otthe women's characters and social status and gain a glimpse ot the divisions and tensions in pre-war France. It becomes slightly staged in places. but basically this Is a moving, deceptively simple piece at ensemble acting (in French. so it’s wise to get a programme) 0 Le Lavoir. The Washhouse. 9-10 Abbeymount, (venue 117) Tickets 226 2033. Until 29 Aug. 3pm.
Electricity proves a surprisingly apt metaphor tor lite in this witty UK premiere at a play by Daniel Therriault. Smooth-talking womanizer. Rip. works as an electrician with his slow and sometimes dangerous partner. Stan. When Stan lays into Rip‘s girltriend. he decidesto do something about him. ‘I don'ttake nothing in. I like totix things mysell'. he declares setting up an ECT machine inthe workshop. ..
This is an impressive. it contrived. play. with as many twists in the plotas there are twists inthe language. Prepare to be moved as well as entertained. lorthe acting is unilormly excellent. In particular. Steve Spencer asthe nervy. gullible Stan. is an anti-hero you will rememberlor a longtime. (Stephanie Billen)
0 Battery. American Theatreworks. St Paul's and St George‘s Church Hall. York Place. (Venue 114) 557 5151. Until August22. 3.10pm. £3.75 (£3.25)
Extraordinary that a show as entertaining as this should be about pregnancy and nuclear dumping. John Burrows' IT'S A GIRL! bulges with good songs and sharp one-liners. yet retains enough balance to take a thought-provoking and honest look at hope lor- our tuture.
Being pregnant is uncomlortable. buttry teeling good about giving birth on top at a repository
tor low-level waste. Emotional issues come to the lore in this story ollive women's light against the monsterworld at Government inquiries and doctors' waiting rooms. The play succeeds. however. in being never po-laced and hardly ever schmaltzy and close-harmony a cappella singing is surprisingly ettective in making cutting comment on the sharp end 01 motherhood.
Dukes Theatre Company's ettervescent lemale team 01 live bring highly polished pertormances and tremendous good humourto this seriously tunny treatment at the seriously tunny things that we doto ourselves. (Julie Morrice) 0 It's A Girl. Dukes Theatre Company. Southside International. Hicolson Street (venue 82) 667 7365. Until 29 Aug. 9.35pm. £4.50 (£3.50).
THE LAST STROKE
In a bar in New York sits Jetlerson Madison. Abstract Expressionist painter. in a state at advanced inebriation. He is approached by Arthur Fuchs. a kind at Everyman in-the-know who cajoles him into revealing the spiritual and artistic crisis which possesses him.
Robert Patrick’s script is a homage to Jackson Pollock and his contemporaries which tries to account lorthe psychological void into which these 'astronauts’ ot the art world plunged themselves.
Richard Smithies gives a huge. powerful performance as Madison. while PeterJohnson’s Fuchs draws the audience into an understanding ol the controntation which reveals depths within himselt.
An intellectually challenging but ultimately moving piece, this should be seen by anyone seeking to understand the art ot the Fillies. (Andrew Bumet)
o The Last Stroke. John Woltson Presents. Gilded Balloon Studio Theatre. 233 Cowgate (venue 38) 226 2151. Until 30 Aug. 6pm. £3.50 (£3).
TOOTH OF CRIME
This raw. gutsy music drama set in American gangland details the alienation at an ageing rockstarunable to handle eighties street lite. Torn between pride and a desire to breaktree. heaccepts and loses a challenge lrom Crow. the image conscious killer ot the Eighties. (Daniel Renton)
o The Tooth ot Crime. Blue HatTouring Company. Walpole Hall (Tic Toc1). Chester Street. (venue 18).
I] 'ERNAT ONAL ' MFES‘T’DVAL
ON THE FESTIVAL
All otters are strictly subject to availability and the individual managements’ decisions are linal. You must take the whole magazine with you to claim. Only one ticket otter available tor each voucher; lirst come first served.
A Free ticket to SIESTA. Sun 23 Aug (8.30pm) at The Cannon. Lothian Road. Exchange this voucher atthe Filmhouse Box Dtlice. Up to 25 tickets available. Full programme lrom Filmhouse.
Exchange this voucher tor DRE ol the ticket otters at the Assembly Rooms Box Dttice. See Assembly programme lorlull details at other perlormances. Up to 5 pairs available lor each show.
\ ~ >- s IE ~1 I3 LY;
A pair at Free tickets to THE MUSIC OF BULGARIA on Sun 23 Aug (1 pm). Show runs until 29 Aug.
A pair at Free tickets to ZAP — Zimbabwe on Mon 24 Aug (2pm). Show runs until 28 Aug.
Brogue Male Productions I A pair at Free tickets to see Paul 8.
Davies in SLAVE CLDWNS OF THE
THIRD RElCH on Thurs 20. Mon 24 or
Tue 25 (9pm). Exchange this voucher at u Calton Studios Box Dttice (venue 71). Show runs until 29 Aug.
The Green Book Poets A
A pair at Free tickets tor a poetry reading by Edwin Morgan, lain Crichton-Smith and Clive Turnbull, on Thurs 20 Aug (7 30pm) at Fruitmarket Gallery (venue 145).
The List 2i Aug— 3 Sept 7